Player Watch #29: Patrick Ambrose

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eth-dog

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Just wondering where he's at right now. He's been seen as best 22 pretty much his whole career, and now that he's found his niche as a key defender he seems perenially injured, and may have lost his place to Francis?If he has another injury-interrupted year do we keep him as a 28 year old key defender who can't get on the park? If he's confirmed outside of the 22 at the end of the year but has a good year in the VFL does he get traded to somewhere like Gold Coast or Geelong?
 

owen87

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Maybe. What do you think will happen if he has another injury interrupted year where he plays maybe 10 games across the two levels?
Probably depends how BZT and Hartley are looking.

Ridley, Redman and Gleeson would all play a rebounding while, Hartley can negate, and BZT is young.

Ambrose is probably looking to be a depth player from here on out if Francis is the extra tall alongside Hurley and Hooker.
 

blitzer

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I don't think its 100% clear that we need another rebounding player to go with: Saad, McKenna, Hurley, Hooker and Francis. In fact if anything we probably need a mid sized versatile type that can play a range of roles and definitely need someone that can defend. We have a few guys that could fit the bill though. Ambrose's lack of rebound is a bit overstated, I thought he improved significantly in that area even this year. Hell he kicked 2 goals when playing on Charlie Curnow this year (admittedly in a match we all want to forget).

If Ambrose stays fit I think he'll play plenty of games in the seniors. He's next in line as a tall and may even get a spot as a lockdown medium/3rd tall type. I think Hartley only gets a game if Hooker is out or needed up forward (or we have mass injuries). Ambrose is still the best matchup for guys that lead far up the ground too like Lynch (Adelaide).

People assume that Gleeson will just walk back into the side but its kind of arguable whether Francis is playing a role more like Gleeson or more like Ambrose. Francis offers a very strong intercept mark and good rebound which was the crux of what Gleeson offered. Its also pretty clear that he has the agility to play on genuine mid sized players as well as talls. What he doesn't have is an elite tank or an ability to chase the best runners all day long, nor does Hooker. Hurley can probably do a decent job on even the better runners but there may still be a place for Ambrose.
 

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He’s always been a great trainer and runner, but is injury prone now and 4th in line tall defender behind Hurley, Hooker and Francis. Hartley or Margaret might even push ahead of him this year...


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I think he'll struggle would play Dea before Ambrose.
 
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I've liked what ive seen from Ambrose at times but i think this year is about getting his body right and playing 22 games even if a lot of them are VFL. He's never been that good that he's needed to be an automatic inclusion in AFL, attack or defence. I like him on the list though and he is definitely handy depth for injuries to Hurley or Francis. If Hooker were to get injured id prefer to see Hartley or Thatch brought in. If all of Hurley, Hooker, Francis, Mckenna and Saad are fit id prefer the last spot to be between Gleeson, redman or ridley. If all of those 3 are injured then maybe Ambrose gets another look in depending on likely match ups. Also heard someone mention a tagging role. He's got elite endurance and his size would cover Fyfe or Cripps or Martin. Could it be worth a look?
 
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I've liked what ive seen from Ambrose at times but i think this year is about getting his body right and playing 22 games even if a lot of them are VFL. He's never been that good that he's needed to be an automatic inclusion in AFL, attack or defence. I like him on the list though and he is definitely handy depth for injuries to Hurley or Francis. If Hooker were to get injured id prefer to see Hartley or Thatch brought in. If all of Hurley, Hooker, Francis, Mckenna and Saad are fit id prefer the last spot to be between Gleeson, redman or ridley. If all of those 3 are injured then maybe Ambrose gets another look in depending on likely match ups. Also heard someone mention a tagging role. He's got elite endurance and his size would cover Fyfe or Cripps or Martin. Could it be worth a look?
Essendon hasn't been known to use taggers post Sheedy. I agree that Ambrose could do that well, but you really would be sacrificing a midfielder to do that. The ideal tagger these days actually beats the opponent and wins just as much of the footy. I don't think Ambrose can do that.
 
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Ambrose is a very different player to Hartley as well. Hartley is a poor man's Hooker. Ambrose is a poor man's Hurley ... with a bigger tank.
I dont think Hurley and Ambrose are very comparable, height and being a key defender are just about the only things they share in common. Ambrose and Hartley are too defensive which is why they are behind the likes of Hurley/Hooker/Francis.
 

blitzer

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I dont think Hurley and Ambrose are very comparable, height and being a key defender are just about the only things they share in common. Ambrose and Hartley are too defensive which is why they are behind the likes of Hurley/Hooker/Francis.
Generally agree but one other similarity is the types of players they tend to play on. Specifically leading forwards as opposed to taller marking types. Hurley is certainly better than Ambrose against those bigger forwards if needs be but I think both would rather play on a Jack Riewoldt than a Tom Hawkinks or Ben Brown.
 
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Generally agree but one other similarity is the types of players they tend to play on. Specifically leading forwards as opposed to taller marking types. Hurley is certainly better than Ambrose against those bigger forwards if needs be but I think both would rather play on a Jack Riewoldt than a Tom Hawkinks or Ben Brown.
That’s where the height comes in, both are about 193cm so obviously more suited to those types of forwards
 
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